I was bound and determined to finish one more quilt top before 2015 ended, which is how I ended up in front of my sewing machine for the better part of two days. It was totally worth it, though, to finally stitch up the quilt top I’d planned about 18 months before.

Beyond Netural by John Adams is one of those books that just clicked with me. I could see myself making every quilt in the book. They’re just so striking and beautiful and, well, I just loved them.

I especially love the cover quilt, Pacific Crest. When we received our first shipment of Cotton+Steel at work, I knew it was a great pairing. I painstakingly picked out the fabrics and the perfect background fabric, expecting to dive in and start sewing right away. Yeah, that didn’t happen. I’d occasionally pet the pile of fabric and sigh, then put it back in the bin until the next petting session.

But, oh, it was worth the wait!

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It’s a big quilt, much bigger than I realized when I got started. I think I realized the size when I picked out the fabric but 18 months between picking the fabric and actually cutting and sewing the top made some of the details a little fuzzy.

It’s a lot of half-square triangles but they went together pretty quickly. Laying out the top took about as much time as making all those HSTs! I didn’t pick a really varied palette so that did make for some challenges with layout since it was hard to keep like colors from being too close to each other.

I also used different cuts of fabrics than those listed in the pattern. I touched on this a bit when I was on Pat Sloan’s podcast recently: If you deviate from a pattern, write down what you changed right away and keep it with the pattern or book. Otherwise, when you actually start making that quilt 18 months later, you’ll have to remember exactly why you have 1/3 yard and 1/4 yard cuts of fabric instead of fat quarters. And an extra yard of background fabric.

I’ve got the backing fabric already and have a pretty good idea how I want to quilt it but the size is giving me a little pause. I’ve never quilted anything this size before and I’m not sure I want this to be my practice quilt. Fortunately, I’ve got a stack of tops in need of quilting so plenty of chances to work myself up to this one.